A family moves into a large old mansion in the countryside which seems to have a mysterious and sinister power over its new residents.


Dan Curtis


Robert Marasco (novel), William F. Nolan (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
6 wins & 1 nomination. See more awards »





Complete credited cast:
Karen Black ... Marian Rolf
Oliver Reed ... Ben Rolf
Burgess Meredith ... Arnold Allardyce
Eileen Heckart ... Roz Allardyce
Lee Montgomery ... David Rolf (as Lee H. Montgomery)
Dub Taylor ... Walker
Bette Davis ... Aunt Elizabeth
Joseph Riley Joseph Riley ... Ben's Father
Todd Turquand Todd Turquand ... Young Ben
Orin Cannon Orin Cannon ... Minister
Jim Myers Jim Myers ... Dr. Ross
Anthony James ... The Chauffeur


Ben and Marian Rolf rent a grand old country mansion as a summer getaway for themselves, their twelve year old son Davey, and Ben's Aunt Elizabeth. They feel they can't turn down the rent deal offered to them by the house's owners, siblings Roz and Arnold Allardyce, despite some reservations. First amongst those reservations, they are to take care of the house on their own, which Ben feels is too big a job, especially for Marian and the interior housekeeping. In Marian's words, the large size of the house is a "waste". And second and perhaps more important amongst those reservations, the Allardyces' aged mother will be staying in her room at the house, the Rolfs who are to provide a tray of food left outside her room three times a day, which Marian vows to take care of on her own, with no other members of the family to go into that isolated wing of the house so as not to disturb Mrs. Allardyce's peace. Upon their arrival at the house for the first day of their stay, they find a note ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


THE FATHER. He knew there was something sinister about the house but he didn't know what it was. THE MOTHER. She was living in the house but she didn't know the house was beginning to live in her. THE LANDLORD. He told them the house would take care of itself. But he didn't tell them it would take care of them too. THE AUNT. She wanted a nice, quiet vacation-but it may be the last one she ever takes. THE LANDLORD'S SISTER. She asked them to take care of her mother but she wouldn't tell them why See more »


PG | See all certifications »

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Did You Know?


Bette Davis detested Oliver Reed, refering to him as "that man" and only speaking to him when they shared onscreen dialogue. After filming, she described him as "possibly one of the most loathesome human beings I have ever had the misfortune of meeting". See more »


After David (Lee Montgomery) falls from the gazebo and comes back into the house, the graze makeup on his knee is significantly different from shot to shot. See more »


Ben Rolf: Marian, whether you come with us or not; tomorrow we're going back.
Marian Rolf: Going back? To what?
Ben Rolf: To what we had.
Marian Rolf: We had nothing!
Ben Rolf: And what do you suppose we've got now?
See more »


Featured in The 50 Best Horror Movies You've Never Seen (2014) See more »

User Reviews

One of the scariest movies that I have ever seen.
1 June 2002 | by mk_chinaSee all my reviews

Without a doubt, one of the scariest movies that I have ever seen. The scene with the undertaker and coffin coming up the stairs still gives me nightmares. The final scene in the attic throws you out of your seat; a scene that I have never forgotten.

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USA | Italy



Release Date:

18 October 1976 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Burnt Offerings See more »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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